Some of my favourite photos

Saturday 29 March 2014

Always have your camera in the car (and food)

We were driving back from shopping when I spotted a hare in a field. Luckily I had my camera on me so my Mum pulled the car over into a layby and we walked into the field.

I sat down next to the hedge, in the sunshine, out of the wind, while my mum went and made lunch from the food we had just bought.

The hare didn't seem to notice me at all, it was hopping around and nibbling on the plants.

The hare would quite often stop to scent mark a big lump of mud with his chin, like in the photo below.

Friday 28 March 2014


Yesterday afternoon we were sat in the livingroom when we saw a heron fly past the window.
I grabbed my camera and managed to quickly get these photos.

We have a pair of rooks that like the mealworms that we put out for the Robins

The wood anemone are now out in the wood.

Wednesday 26 March 2014

Busy couple of days - Radio, badgers and Sparrowhawks

It has been a busy couple of days.
Firstly my Grampy Dave sent me a couple of photos he had taken in his back garden of a sparrowhawk eating what looks like a blackbird.

Last night we went badger watching. The badgers were out early because it had rained. One particular badger came right under our feet and didn't seem bothered even when we were talking.

This morning I had to get up at 6am because BBC Radio Oxford were going to interview me about my Local Patch reporting.
We did 3 live interviews from the field next to my house, on the breakfast show.
We then came back to the house and recorded a 4th bit which was played at 9.50am.

Sunday 23 March 2014

Over the weekend

The weekend has been a lot colder than recent days, with sunshine and showers. 
Animal wise it has been a bit of a mixture too.
On Saturday evening we went for a quick half hour badger watch. One came within 10m of our tree we sit in. We could hear it eating.
The owls were very vocal, we could hear Tawny owls and Barn owls

We found a poo on our patio - not sure whether it's a fox or a hedgehog poo.

If it's a fox, it is a bit worrying because if a fox can get into our garden our dogs can probably escape.
If it is a hedgehog coming in through a hole in the fence it means there is a hole big enough for our rabbits to escape.
We decided to put some dog food out over night and the trail camera to see what it was.
The poo definitely didn't belong to this animal.

More flowers and buds are appearing such as these common dog violets.


I think this is a Sulphur Tuft

Thursday 20 March 2014

Road Kill - Splatter

I have just found a project called Splatter which is a citizen science project that collates UK wildlife road casualty data using social media.

They are researching the impact of roads on UK wildlife

Anyone that sees a dead mammal, bird, amphibian or reptile can report them through facebook or Twitter with the date and location.

Today I have reported 2 badgers that my mum saw on a road the other day and a rat and a rabbit that I have seen dead on the road.

Wednesday 19 March 2014

Thirsty Rook

This rook was drinking out of a puddle that hasn't dried up from the rain over the last few months.

Tuesday 18 March 2014


Last night we put the trail camera down at 7.12pm. It was exactly 10 minutes before it captured it's first badger on film. During the 40 minutes the camera was in place it took 12 films.

This hole was about 15 metres and the other side of the brambles from the main sett.
I think it must be connected because there are well used track between them.

My mum has set Appleton Wildlife diary up with a facebook account, please come and look at it and 'like' it.
There is a good video of a nosey badger on there.

Sunday 16 March 2014

Sunny Sunday

Today we went looking for Hares. We found them almost straight away.
The hares were boxing, running, washing and eating until we heard a buzzard call overhead, we looked up and saw four buzzards circling then the hares sprinted away into the hedge.

As it was such a lovely sunny day we decided to go and visit our friends who run the local falconry centre. Once the last display of the day was over and the public started to leave we stayed behind in the flying field because James had once mentioned that the wild Red Kites and Buzzards sometimes come down and savenge for any food left after the display.
Six birds, three Red Kites and three Buzzards turned up overhead almost immediately. While we sat there the birds circled round and round but didn't land. I expect they did as soon as we left.

Over the week we have been watching where we saw signs that we thought might have been a water vole. One day we left the trail camera out for a few hours but although it was triggered once it didn't capture any footage. Nevertheless the apple we left out was completely eaten a few hours later.
I will continue watching over the next few weeks and hopefully see something even if it is a rat and not a water vole.

The banks of the stream now have some colour due to this Lesser Celandine.

Saturday 15 March 2014

Monthly photos

Last month I took 4 photos on my patch and will continue to take the same scenes for a year to see how much they change.

In the first pictures you can see the crops have begun to grow but you can't see that the leaves on the tree have started.

Farmland looking into wood FEB 2014

Farmland looking into wood MARCH 2014

In the second pictures some plants in the pond are now showing and grass and bluebells leaves are just visable.

Pond in the wood FEB 2014

Pond in the wood MARCH 2014

In the third pictures you can definitely see more vegetation on the side of the stream

Small stream FEB 2014

Small Stream MARCH 2014

View over the River Thames and beyond FEB 2014

In the fourth pictures, on the right hand side you can see the flooding has gone down.

View over the River Thames and beyond MARCH 2014

At 6pm tonight I coud see the sun setting out of my front window.

                                 At the same time I could see the moon rising out of my back window

Friday 14 March 2014

Bumblefoot or warts

I saw this Chaffinch today in our garden. 
It has something wrong with it's right leg.
It could be Bumblefoot which is a cut that has become infected or it could be Fringilla papillomavirus which is a warty growth that affect chaffinches.

This Blue tit has been very busy this afternoon sorting out the edges of the hole on the nest box.

Wednesday 12 March 2014

Could this be signs of a water vole?

The catkins are now out in the wood

After school I made some seed cakes to fill up the empty coconut shells for the birds.

We walked down to the woods to see if we could find the patch where we had seen frogs before.

Hopping around just above the stream we found this Common frog

While we were looking under the ferns and leaves for the frogs we came across what looked like a Water Vole latrine.
The poo was about the size of a tic tac and very soft.

A little way from the latrine there was a small hole

Using gloves we discovered the poo was quite squishy and my Dad sniffed it and said it didn't smell.

I think the only way to make sure it is a water vole and not a rat is to try and take a photo or film it.